Working from home with toddlers is hard
First things first, I’ve worked from home for more than a year now and before the pandemic, things were a little easier with the help of child care. After the pandemic hit and stay-at-home orders were issued, I found myself home with my 5-year-old and almost 2-year-old, struggling to get everything done around the house and for work. My guest bedroom was my office and it was on the other side of the family room where the kids play and hang out. I managed to make it work, but some days it was really hard. Keeping Camden from coming in and jumping on the bed, or occupying Kate with Elmo on one screen and work on the other, all while she sat in my lap, was getting exhausting. There were so many things for the kids to touch and mess with and I was getting easily agitated. Then, one day while I scheduling out social posts for my company, I read a FlexJobs article about turning a closet into an office. The DIY nerd in me had a lightbulb above her head. This could work!
Directly across the hall from the guest room we have this closet that is under the stairs of our split-level house. I was using it to store toys, art supplies, air mattresses, etc. I really wasn’t using it to it’s full potential. The closet in our guest room wasn’t full and there was plenty of storage space open in there and under the bed.
As far as the location – it’s perfect. This closet faces out toward the guest room but it also looks out to the family room where I can see what the kids are doing at all times. Even better, it’s only big enough for one person. I mean, the kids can come in, but they really can’t mess with much. So much better than the guest room.
The first thing I had to do was make sure my desk would fit. The closet is about 4 inches longer than the desk. PERFECT! Now, let’s make this happen!
Let's Do This!
After moving all the stuff in the closet out, I rearranged our guest room closet and started moving things in and it all fit perfectly. It was like it was meant to be. Then, I had to do away with the ugly tan that was on the closet walls, so I took the happy “Tropical Dream” paint I had leftover from the guest bedroom and went to town on the walls of the closet. It only took me about an hour to get the closet painted and while it dried, I binged some Netflix.
Next, I moved the desk in, and took to Target.com and Amazon.com to order some wall decor to help organize some of my stuff. I wanted to maximize my desk space as much as I could. Everything else I already had for my office was from either Amazon or Wayfair.
The stuff that completed the closet office
A lot of friends have been asking me about the little design choices and accents that helped complete my space. So, here we go.
- The white wall organizer is from Target.“Mesh Wall Office Supply Organizer White”
- The pink wall pocket/shelf is from Target. “Hexagon Wall Pocket Shelf Blush Peach – Room Essentials™”
- The hanging potted plant is from Target. “Artificial Hanging Potted Plant White – Room Essentials™”
- The office chair is from Wayfair. “Malbon Mesh Task Chair”
- The desk. “Sauder Cottage Road Desk, Soft White finish”
- Macbook Pro stand. “Nulaxy Laptop Stand, Ergonomic Aluminum Laptop Mount Computer Stand, Detachable Laptop Riser Notebook Holder Stand Compatible with Macbook Air Pro, Dell XPS, Lenovo More 10-15.6″ Laptops – Space Gray”
- Pink personal fan. “Ablon Desk Fan, Small Table Personal Portable Mini Fan Powered by USB, 3 Speed and Quiet Design for Desktop Office（Pink)”
- Wall mount for HP display (and other displays). “VideoSecu Adjustable Tilt & Swivel TV Wall Mount Bracket for LCD TV and Monitor Max 44Lbs, VESA 100/75 Black 1FF”
As a working mom, this is the ultimate workspace
This workspace is everything right now. During this pandemic and deployment, life has been crazy, but this office makes things feel a little less stressful and I have my own space to concentrate. No little hands grabbing everything around me and I can see everything going on in the family room. If you have a closet like this, do it. You can make it your happy place. A workspace doesn’t need to be huge. I love how mine turned out.